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The Mueller Report and the Watergate “Road Map”- We Cannot Fault Mueller without Reading the Report

Mueller did what he was charged to do. Mueller did not fail when he delivered his report. The Barr letter is another story altogether.

Without reading the 400 page Mueller report, we cannot fault Mueller. Mueller most certainly did not exonerate 45. Many 45 associates have been convicted. Indictment too long has been the opiate of liberals to remove 45. We the people can vote based on publicly available information. The Watergate grand jury report “road map” summarized the evidence without making any recommendation.

The criminal law question is this: was a crime committed, and did 45 commit that crime? Set aside the fact that the Mueller investigation has already resulted in eight criminal guilty pleas; 37 criminal indictments; and separate criminal investigations in the Southern District of New York, other federal districts, and at least one state. (The Cohen indictment in the SDNY all but names 45 as Individual 1, an unindicted co-conspirator.  An unindicted co-conspirator is someone whom the prosecution believes is guilty, but is not charged for some policy reason. In this case, the policy reason might be 45 is the sitting president of the US.) Intelligence gathering within the intelligence community, including agencies and Congressional committees, is ongoing to determine if 45 is an asset, witting or unwitting, for a foreign government.

Mueller, a consummate lawyer and criminal justice professional, demonstrates integrity, independence, and a dedication to justice, truth, and the rule of law. I say that based on the experience and reputation of Mueller, and of members of his team who served as Assistant United States Attorneys for the SDNY; personal conversations with reliable source(s) who worked closely with Mueller in the past and knew him well; and my experience as a former AUSA for the SDNY.

The Mueller investigation involves different standards, which vary by context: (1) Mueller’s charging document, (2) the criminal law, (3) intelligence gathering, (4) Congressional oversight, (5) removal under the Constitution, (6) politics and campaigning among office holders and candidates, (7) the court of public opinion, (8) journalism, and (9) advertising to support journalism, or political campaigns. The criminal law involves the most rigorous standards – was a crime committed, and did 45 commit that crime? The criminal law defines the elements of the crime that must be established beyond a reasonable doubt based on admissible evidence subject to proper procedures, including the right to counsel, the presumption of innocence, the right to confront and cross-examine witnesses, the right to a jury trial,  the rules of evidence, and judicial review. Mueller apparently concluded, regarding 45, there are serious questions of law and fact about obstruction of justice, and there is insufficient evidence of conspiracy, based on his investigation.

Condemning or celebrating the investigation without reading the full report is inappropriate.

Robert García is a former AUSA for the SDNY and civil rights attorney experienced in death penalty defense, criminal defense, and police misconduct lawyering.

Resources

Mueller’s charge

Watergate grand jury report road map